Plasma cutting is quickly becoming the go-to cutting method for industrial and home projects, but they can be very costly with machines priced anywhere from $1,500 to $3,500. That’s a lot of money to spend on a single machine with limited uses.
With all that said, plasma cutting is still one of the most efficient and cost-effective ways of cutting different types of materials without needing expensive inert gases. With rapid cutting speed, extreme versatility, a great safety-profile, and cheaper overall consumables, plasma cutting makes short work of materials up to an inch in thickness.
That’s why we’re here to help get you the right bang for your buck. We’ve put together a list of the best budget plasma cutter machines that are perfect for any job you might have along with some crucial tips on how to choose one that’s perfect for you.
- Best Cheap Plasma Cutter – Comparison Chart
- The Seven Best Budget Plasma Cutters
- PrimeWeld Cut50D 50A Air Inverter Plasma Cutter
- SunGoldPower 50A IGBT Cut50 Air Plasma Cutter
- Mophorn 50A Dual Voltage IGBT Plasma Cutter
- S7 Cut50 50A Inverter IGBT Plasma Cutter
- Lotos LT3500 35A Air Plasma Cutter
- Amico Power Cut-50 50A Pro Plasma Cutter
- Coral Cut-50 IGBT Plasma Cutter
- How To Choose The Best Budget Plasma Cutter
Best Cheap Plasma Cutter – Comparison Chart
|Name & Brand||Max Amp||Volts||Weight||Price|
|Amico Cut-50||50 Amp||110/230V||31 Pounds|
|Coral Cut-50||50 Amp||110/220V||21.2 Pounds|
|S7 Plasma Cutter||50 Amp||110/220V||21.3 Pounds|
|Sungoldpower Air Plasma Cutter||50 Amp||110 and 220V||25 Pounds|
|PrimeWeld Air Inverter||50 Amp||110/220V||22.5 lbs|
|Mophorn Plasma Cutter||50 Amp||110/220V||22.3 Pounds|
|Lotos LT3500||35 Amp||110V/120V||17.55 Pounds|
The Seven Best Budget Plasma Cutters
When looking for a budget option, it’s never enough to buy cheap. It’s important to find a product that stays high-quality and can still get the job done. Take a look at these seven budget plasma cutters and the value they bring for their price.
PrimeWeld is an exceedingly popular brand when it comes to welding and cutting machines and for good reason. They make quality products that are sure to get the job done. Their Cut50D air inverter plasma cutter is no exception. This amazing plasma cutter is a great option if you aren’t looking to break the bank.
This plasma cutter package gives you a bunch of great components to help you ease your way into plasma cutting. Each purchase comes with the standard power source and cable, a plasma cutting torch, a ground clamp, an air pressure regulator, an air pressure gauge, and six air hose connections.
As an air inverter plasma cutter, you will be needing your own air compressor to provide for the arc. This isn’t a major issue when you consider the amount of money you can save since you don’t have to purchase extra inert gases. Any air compressor you have will fit flush with the air pressure regulator included making it an easy and adaptable piece of equipment.
The machine is dual voltage compatible but it comes default with a 220v plug. You can purchase a 110v plug but this limits the machines amperage to 25 amps. The 220 default helps run more power and maxes it out at 50 amps, making it an extremely powerful cutter for such a small package.
One of the machine’s biggest strengths is its portability. It stands at 15 inches long, six inches wide, and 12 inches high. At only 22.5 pounds, this machine can be carried around the workshop and transported between locations with ease.
The torch included is a standard plasma torch and doesn’t contain any special features, but it will get the job done when you need it. You can easily swap it out for your preferred torch and it should work seamlessly.
The only issue we find with the product is that it uses consumables fairly quickly and you’re only given two extra electrode pieces per purchase. We believe it would be better for the customer if the package came with at least four extra electrodes, but for its extremely agreeable price, it’s hard to complain.
All in all, the PrimeWeld Cut50D inverter plasma cutter is a great inexpensive plasma cutter for the eager hobbyist. It’s easy and simple to use and it gives you everything you need to get into your projects right away.
SunGoldPower’s Cut50 plasma cutter is an incredible option if you’re looking to cut a wide array of different materials. The variable cutting current makes cutting these different materials a breeze, not to mention its dual voltage compatibility that makes power output capability extremely flexible.
SunGoldPower gives you the IGBT machine, an air pressure regulator, a gas hose, a hose clamp, a 10’ ground clamp, and a 13’ PT31 plasma torch with two sets of consumable tips.
The plasma cutter package includes two exchangeable plugs for both 220v and 110v. This is a great addition considering that you’re looking for a cheap plasma cutter. An extra plug is an extra expense and it only makes sense that the package includes the components needed to help it run under any circumstances.
The air pressure gauge that’s included in the package makes it easy to keep tabs on the quality of arc you’re putting out. We recommend you keep it at about 40psi for a tight arc and a smooth cut throughout. The smoothness and consistency of this cut can also be attributed to the IGBT that it comes with. This kind of transistor provides a more efficient and consistent output than the standard MOSFET types that you see more commonly.
The product doesn’t shy away from adding extra protective measures with this plasma cutter. Safety is a common concern when purchasing cheaper products, but with its over-heat and over-voltage protection, these worries are put to rest.
One of the features that makes this a great product is the long ground clamp and plasma torch included. These allow you to stay extremely mobile when cutting, not to mention the entire machine weighs only 26 pounds. This portable plasma cutter is easy to carry and move around your workshop to meet and needs you might have.
The only issue we have with the machine is its relatively thin maximum cutting thickness. The product claims to cleanly cut only ½” and ¾” for a rougher cut. This in itself isn’t too bad especially when you know exactly what you’re going to use the product for. If you’re going to be grinding and painting over the cut then this isn’t much of an issue.
Overall, SunGoldPower’s 50A IGBT Cut50 air plasma cutter is an affordable option if you’re looking for a little more variability in your plasma cutter. The safety assurances and plug switches address some of the main concerns when purchasing a cheaper machine. This product is definitely worth your consideration.
The Morphorn 50A plasma cutter is a machine that boasts increased energy-saving capabilities while maintaining high efficiency. This plasma cutter keeps things as simple as it can be with all parts you’d need to get started right away.
Each package comes with the inverter plasma cutter, a quality plasma cutting torch, an air pressure regulator and air/water separator, two consumable plasma cutter tips, and a ground clamp.
This particular plasma cutter opts for an IGBT system as opposed to the more common MOSFET system. The IGBT affords you with greater control and a very consistent cut. The machine also boasts a 60% duty cycle, meaning you can sustain a continuous cut for a fairly long time compared to other inverter plasma cutters.
At max 50 Amps, the plasma cutter can cut up to half an inch of stainless steel, mild steel, and aluminum. Pretty standard for most plasma cutters but also incredibly reliable. This makes it a good option for different projects ranging from sheet metal fabrication to automotive repair and maintenance.
The product dimensions also make it easy to move around during a project. It measures up to 15” in length, 6” in width, 11” in height, and weighs in at only 23 pounds.
The machine comes equipped with a quiet and effective cooling system that prevents the machine from overheating. Safety is imperative when working with high voltage machinery, that is why the product also comes with over-voltage and under-voltage protection to prevent workplace mishaps.
It’s important to note that the air/water separator must always be equipped along with the air compressor. The machine needs dry air from the air compressor to maintain a consistent plasma arc which leads to a better cut overall.
We believe the most glaring issue is that the product does not give clear instructions on how to replace the integrated 110v plug for a 220v compatible plug. This is an important issue to address since the product can only output about 25 Amps when running on 110v. Despite this, the product still works as well as advertised and remains fairly useful.
The Mophorn 50A IGBT plasma cutter is an example of a great barebones plasma cutter that really delivers. It’s a great option for personal projects and light industrial work without overwhelming the user with overcomplicated instructions. This is a plasma cutter that provides great value for its low cost.
S7 Cut50 IGBT plasma cutter is another great budget plasma cutter that performs consistently and efficiently, despite its lower price point. With a complete set of pieces and attachments, as long as you have an air compressor of your own you’ll be ready to start cutting right from the get-go.
When you purchase this product you get the plasma cutter unit, a quality ground clamp, a plasma cutting torch with synthetic leather cover, a 110v adapter plug, air/water separator and pressure regulator, three plasma torch tips, four ceramic cup covers, and the appropriate gas tubes and fasteners.
This is yet another plasma cutter that utilizes the IGBT system to deliver accurate and consistent arcs. This is further enhanced by the machine’s gas delay feature which allows you to adjust the gas output during welding. Gas is what helps maintain a steady arc when needed having control of that gas gives you further control of your cutting arc. Proper use of this feature will yield a much smoother cut than usual.
If you need to have a consistent cut for a longer period, this S7 plasma cutter boasts an 80% duty cycle which allows it to maintain a continuous arc longer than most other plasma cutters. Continuous cutting at 220v and 50 Amps can quickly use up your consumable parts, making the extra consumables included all the more useful.
The machine is extremely portable, coming in at only 6” tall, 13” wide, and 15” long. Despite its small and light stature, it can still maintain good cut thickness with clean cuts up to half an inch and severance cuts up to ¾” of an inch.
The only issue that we’ve found with this product is that it goes through consumables fairly fast. This is a small tradeoff due to its fast cutting speeds and high power output.
In summary, the S7 Cut50 IGBT plasma cutter is a thorough and well put together plasma cutting package that delivers on all fronts. It’s superior gas delay control and complete accessories make this a great machine despite its staggeringly low cost. We highly recommend this product.
The Lotos LT3500 plasma cutter is the perfect tool for you if you need clean consistent cuts without too much power. It’s lower amperage makes it an efficient energy saver while still delivering quality cutting power.
Each purchase comes with the 35 Amp digital inverter unit, a 110v plug, a ¼” type D coupler for air compressor connection, an air filter/air gauge, a quality plasma torch, a ground clamp, and a set of consumables. Simplicity is key when it comes to this plasma cutter.
This Lotos plasma cutter runs at a maximum of 35 Amps and can cut a thickness of up to a ⅗” but will always cleanly cut ⅖” metals. The machine is best used for stainless steel, steel alloy, copper, aluminum, and other common materials.
The 35 Amp output of the Lotos LT3500 seems fairly weak compared to the other entries on this list, but this is not always necessarily bad. The 110v input consumes far less energy than the 220v that we commonly see on these kinds of products, making it an even more cost-efficient plasma cutter.
Some projects won’t require too much power and 35 Amps is, more often than not, more than enough power to get good quality cuts. Lower power output also means a more manageable temperature on the arc. Along with the 35% duty cycle at 35 Amps, this can lead to cleaner cuts that require less post-process clean up. We recommend running the machine between 65 and 70 psi for a consistent and manageable arc that produces a clean cut.
Its small dimensions and six-foot power cable lend to its extreme mobility and portability. At 11” long, 6” wide, 9” tall, and only 17 pounds, the machine is easy to maneuver and move around any workspace without becoming cumbersome and unwieldy.
The only downside the product has is its single voltage setting. Most of what we’ve seen so far in the list has dual voltage capabilities, making them incredibly versatile. But, understandably, Lotos opted for 110v machine especially when considering the extremely low price point.
Overall, the Lotos LT3500 plasma cutter is a great pick for the DIY handyman. Its maneuverability and portability make it a great tool to move around the workshop while its extremely low price makes and simple set up makes it a great entry-level plasma cutter if you need something quick and easy.
The Amico Power Cut-50 plasma cutter is a good example of a heavy-duty industrial quality plasma cutter that also works well as a hobby tool. Its rigid construction and straightforward settings make it a great overall tool for anyone looking for a cheaper option for a cutting tool.
Each purchase comes with the Amico Power plasma cutter unit, a 13-foot ergonomic SG55/AG60 plasma cutting torch, an 11-foot work clamp, an integrated air filter and pressure gauge, a ground clamp, a 110v adapter, and some extra consumables.
The Amico Power Cut-50 comes in a dual voltage configuration that gives you the power of 220v and the subtlety of 110v input. At a maximum of 50 Amps, the plasma cutter can cut materials up to an inch thick. This is a quarter-inch more than most other plasma cutters of the same price range. It also has a duty cycle of 60% when running on 50 Amps and 100% uptime at 38.7 Amps.
We recommend a gas pressure range of 45 to 70 psi depending on your amperage and material thickness. The arc startup is also non-contact, meaning you won’t need to directly touch your torch tip to the material to start an arc. Keeping the torch about a quarter-inch above the metal should be enough to start the arc.
Despite its heavy-duty durable frame, the unit is still extremely portable. At 17” long, 8” wide, 14” tall, and weighing in at only 22 pounds, this machine can easily be moved and brought around your workspace. Not to mention the long power cable, plasma cutter torch, and work clamp that makes it all the more suitable for odd angled cutting.
The only real downside this machine has is that it’s slightly more expensive than the rest. But when you consider the price tags of most plasma cutters and welders, this machine is still very affordable. With all the additions and bonuses that this package gives you, you get far more than your money’s worth with this purchase.
The Amico Power Cut-50 plasma cutter is one of the more expensive options of the budget plasma cutters. Its high-quality cutting performance, incredible versatility, and robust design make it an amazing option for both professional and personal projects alike. We highly recommend this plasma cutter for anyone looking for a sturdy and reliable budget plasma cutter.
The Coral Cut-50 IGBT Plasma Cutter is a reliable standard plasma cutter that serves as a great way to top off this list. This particular plasma cutter doesn’t have any fancy bells and whistles, but it is quite consistent and very reliable, which is exactly what you need from an inexpensive plasma cutter.
The Coral Cut-50 comes with the plasma cutting machine, an air pressure regulator, a ground clamp, a 4M plasma cutting torch, two consumable electrodes, two extra ceramic torch caps, a 220v plug, and a 110v conversion plug. It’s a fairly extensive list of components for such a low price point. This is everything you need to start cutting immediately, except for an air compressor.
Its dual voltage capability makes this machine a very versatile tool to have in your inventory and the fact that you don’t need to purchase a conversion plug makes it all the more convenient and cost-efficient.
This particular plasma cutter runs well at a cap of 50 Amps and has a duty cycle of 85%. This is incredibly efficient for such a high power output. Most machines run anywhere between 35% to 65% duty cycle at 50 Amps. This 85% duty cycle allows the arc to last longer and save both time and energy by reducing the need for the machine to ramp up between cycles.
This machine is also a great example of a powerful yet compact plasma cutter. Weighing in at only 19 pounds, the Coral Cut-50 is easy to carry and move around your space without it ever being too cumbersome. It is 15” long, 6” wide, and 13” tall, making it easy to store after use.
The product description claims that it can cut up to ¾” but with the kind of power running through this machine and we’re sure it can roughly cut up to an inch in thickness.
The only issue we found with the product is that it requires direct contact to start the arc. Plasma cutters that require direct contact tend to go through consumables much quicker compared to machines that can start an arc without contact.
All in all, the Coral Cut-50 IGBT plasma cutter is a great run-of-the-mill plasma cutter that will give you consistent quality results without requiring too much investment. Boasting admirable cutting power, great portability, and a remarkable duty cycle for its amperage, this machine is a strong way to end this list of budget plasma cutters.
How To Choose The Best Budget Plasma Cutter
Many of the budget plasma cutters can seem fairly similar, making it difficult to choose the perfect machine for you. Here are some things to keep in mind before buying one to ensure you ensure you get the best value for your purchase.
How Thick Is The Material You’ll Be Cutting?
Material thickness is a key factor when purchasing a plasma cutter. Most plasma cutters can cut different metals anywhere from a quarter of an inch to over an inch and thickness. Different machines have different levels of output based on their specifications.
If you have a steel plate that’s an inch thick, you’d want a more powerful 220v and 50 Amp plasma cutter that can handle that kind of material. At the same time, that kind of power might be excessive for thinner materials.
What Kind Of Outlets Do You Have At Your Station?
Many of the machines on this list are dual input voltage capable. But it’s very important to keep in mind the kind of input your machine accommodates and the default plug that it comes with. It’s also important to know if your machine comes with an adaptor included since some dual voltage machines don’t come with one.
This is a potential expense you need to be ready for in case you’d want to switch out your voltage input.
What Kind Of Work Will You Be Doing?
Are you looking to buy a plasma cutter mostly as a tool for your hobby and personal projects or are you buying one for professional purposes? This is a crucial consideration when buying a tool like this because you will need a machine that can keep up with the kind of work you’re doing.
Some options have more sturdy frames than others and that’s an important aspect you might want to invest in, especially if you plan to use the machine for your profession.
What Extras Does The Package Come With?
Some of the things you’ll always want with a purchase are the plasma cutter torches, a few consumables, an air/water separator, a ground clamp, and the machine itself. Everything else that comes with it is a bonus. It’s important to know exactly what you’ll need that might not come included in the package.
This will save you the trouble of having to make a few unexpected extra purchases.
What Is The Machine’s Duty Cycle?
Duty cycles are important for long consistent cutting. The duty cycle refers to a portion of a 10 minute period that a plasma cutter can continuously cut metal within a consistent current.
Machines with high amperage and a long duty cycle will allow you to get the most time-efficient cut, but improper maintenance of this cycle may lead to rougher and sub-optimal results. Lower duty cycles require more downtime but also maintain the lowest consistent temperature, greatly decreasing the chance of damaging the material.
IGBT Or MOSFET?
These are two of the main transistor types currently being used in welders and plasma cutters. The MOSFET is the most commonly used type at the moment but many developers are making the switch to IGBT. The IGBT supposedly performs better and delivers cleaner and more consistent cuts.
We recommend getting an IGBT plasma welder mainly because that is what is believed to be the better option by experts.
Will Your Machine Remain Stationary?
This consideration has everything to do with the machine’s weight and mobility. If you’re going to need to move the machine a lot, it will pay to get a lighter and more compact plasma cutter. But if you’re going to be working on a table for the most part then the weight wouldn’t matter all that much. There are also different mounting options for the machine should you choose to keep it stationary on a desk.
If you need a strong and sturdy budget plasma cutter for heavy industrial work, then the robust construction of the Amico Power Cut-50 plasma cutter is a terrific option. If you just need a light and affordable plasma cutter for a personal project or perhaps a home workshop, then check out the Lotos LT3500 plasma cutter. If you need something versatile and adaptable, then try the S7 Cut50 IGBT plasma cutter.
Price isn’t the only thing you should consider when looking for a cheaper plasma cutter. There are so many things to consider and there are a host of great options out there ready to get the job done. We hope that this guide was able to help you reach a well-informed decision.